Thursday, December 09, 2004

My lethal weapon's my mind

I'm showing my age by dropping an ancient Public Enemy quote, but it felt right. I had a great lunch meeting today with one of my favorite clients, who is a buy-side telecom analyst with a firm I would describe as being not at all small. We talked about a lot of things related to telecom, and as a sign of the times, spent most of the session on content strategies and media issues. We also discussed his views on brokers' research generally, which I won't characterize. What was apparent was that his firm is changing the way it looks at the market and makes stock calls pretty dramatically. The process, as it was explained to me, is more interactive and cross-sectoral in nature, leading to some interesting angles on how to play particular themes. This is closely in line with how I have come to view the world. However, it was apparent from his description of the broker research scene (he sees pretty much all of it, I would guess) that the brokers aren't set up to function that way, and very few seem to be trying to do anything about it. As I have previously tried to highlight here and again here, I see a widening gulf between the approach and needs of investors and the information/analysis they are receiving. There are some hard choices ahead in 2005, but I think a bit of bravery and resolve would be well-rewarded at this point.

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